In what is one of the most fun art ideas we’ve heard of for a while Liverpool Biennial has commissioned South Korean artist Koo Jeong A to create a glow-in-the-dark skate park for Everton Park – the highest point in Liverpool, opening in Autumn 2015.
Working collaboratively with specialist skate park designers Wheelscape, the skating community local to Everton, and Liverpool City Skaters, Koo’s design incorporates sculptural elements, and the central bowl will be painted in a phosphorescent paint that will glow in the dark – similar to a skate park that she designed in Vassiviere Island in France (image above).
The paint is chemically the same as natural bioluminescence used by animals such as fireflies and anglerfish. The project is part of the ongoing community-led regeneration of Everton Park, and it is part of Liverpool Biennial’s programme of commissioning long-term or permanent artworks that can be used and integrated into the fabric of the city, enhancing the lives of the people who live there.
The skate park is conceived both as an artwork and as a fully functional, state of the art wheels park, open to skaters and BMX bikers to use and enjoy. The design for the central bowl of the wheels parks responds to its location in Everton Park, and is integrated with a wider landscape of ramps and slides, training area and a BMX track. It sits alongside a play area, outdoor picnic spaces, and astroturf pitches. Young people from North Liverpool and Liverpool City Skaters have been closely involved in all stages of the project’s development.
Everton Park was created in the 1980s out of the extensive house clearances that took place in the area. On the site where grid-iron rows of terrace houses used to stand, an urban park was built. At its heart is Everton Brow, the highest point in Liverpool, affording dramatic views over both the city and the River Mersey.